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The Internet is not the only place to lose your privacy or identity.  Although more and more personal data is stored on the Internet servers, it is still written to hard-disks.

In this two-part workshop, explore the contents of old hard-drives, SD-cards, public wifi-signals and other found data. Using methods borrowed from computer digital forensics participants will peek into the lives of others - users and owners of scavenged data.  Deductively, we will try to discuss and recreate 'psyche' portraits of those strangers and restore the contexts that otherwise would have faded away.  In the process, learn and collect wi-fi signals.  By the end of the workshop all data will be destroyed!

REQUIREMENTS
Knowledge of command line is advantageous, but not required.

Please bring
- an old data storage device, i.e. hard drives, SD cards (your own or find one at a flea market or eBay; the older the better.  Disks don't need to be of large capacity)
- laptop capable of running Virtualbox (OS X, GNU/Linux, Windows)
(please email erica@eyebeam.org if you cannot secure either item. Eyebeam can provide computers; and harddrives first come, first serve)

ABOUT THE INSTRUCTOR
Danja Vasiliev
is a Critical Engineer born in Saint-Petersburg, currently living and working in Berlin.  He studies Systems and Networks through anti-disciplinary experimentation with hardware, firmware and software. Using computational platforms he engages in examination and exploitation of System and Network paradigms in both the physical and digital realms. Based on these findings, Vasiliev creates and exhibits works of Critical Engineering.  Since 1999 Vasiliev has been involved in computer-technology events, media-art exhibitions and seminars around the world. He has received a number of awards and mentions at Ars Electronica, Japan Media Art Festival, and Transmediale, among others.  In October 2011, together with his colleagues Julian Oliver and Gordan Savičić, Vasiliev coauthored The Critical Engineering Manifesto.

This workshop was developed by Gordan Savicic and Danja Vasiliev.

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Eyebeam is pleased to announce the recipients of its 2015 Awards: Celebrating Creativity and Courage in Art & Technology: Ayah Bdeir and Trevor Paglen.

Ayah Bdeir is being honored for enabling current and future generations to easily explore technology's creative potential and Trevor Paglen for helping citizens understand the profound magnitude of digital surveillance through a variety of media. Together, their creative and provocative work demystifies public understanding of technology.

Ayah Bdeir is the founder and CEO of littleBits, the company putting the power of electronics into the hands of everyone. The company makes a library of electronic modules that snap together with magnets to let anyone build, invent, and prototype with electronics. littleBits breaks down powerful technology and has lowered the barriers to experimentation and learning for artists, designers, educators, and students. Bdeir also helped author and champion the Open Hardware Standard, which enables future creators to freely share their work.

Trevor Paglen, trained as a geographer and photographer, exposes and documents the state of American surveillance in the 21st century. His work illuminates the relationship between image and truth. His cinematography was recently featured in the Oscar Award winning documentary Citizenfour on the work of Edward Snowden and the NSA spying scandal.

The two will accept their awards at Eyebeam's first Award Benefit Celebrating Creativity and Courage in Art & Technology on April 21st at Sony’s Wonder Technology Lab (550 Madison Ave. at 56th St.). Tickets here.

 

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The weekend March, 15-16th 2014 the Society for Speculative Rocketry held their inaugural meeting at Eyebeam, Chelsea, New York City.

In a day long workshop 15 society members explored the relationship between past and future realities of space travel and how they live within the public imaginary. Eyebeam was transformed into a Situation Room with window projections overlooking the Pacific Ocean, simulating the view from the RAND Corporations headquarter in Santa Monica, California.

In a guided speculation session building on the practice of The Extrapolation Factory where participants worked from materials such as Rockwell’s 100-year-plan to eventually create their own scale models of space ships or other related artifacts, real or fictional. At the end of the day each participant had at least one piece of ‘payload’ that will go into a functional model rocket. At the end of the day the developed payloads were reviewed in a video call with Karen Lau from SpaceX and Morgan Hendry, Engineer at NASA, JPL.

Day 2 fell on the 88th anniversary of Robert H. Goddard’s launch of the world’s first liquid-fueled rocket at his aunt Effie’s farm in Auburn, Massachusetts. To mark this momentous event, the Society embarked on a day-trip in order to launch the rockets and their payload from the very spot from which humanity had first tested the possibility of eventually escaping the gravitational pull of planet Earth.

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Elsewheres is a modular, site-specific and procedural installation in which computer simulation becomes a medium.

From early computer simulations performed as part of the Manhattan Project to the significance of climate modeling for political processes we are basing our decisions on numerical models. The combination of the postulated wisdom of data and human agency has formed a bridge between the world and us, or so we believe.

At the beginning of the procedure, the exhibition space is recreated as a three-dimensional model, based on architectural drawings. The representation becomes a virtual stage, a laboratory, populated by copies of all objects that are present in the real space, weighed and measured to obtain their relevant properties. They are then made to interact with the space itself as well as with each other. Objects move, touch, break or fly off, caught by a gust of simulated wind or the force of gravity — as observed on Earth or reflecting other places, other possible realities altogether.

Crucially, once a simulation has finished, resulting changes to the virtual space are manually introduced into its physical counterpart, objects carefully placed into their new positions. People thus become agents of the simulation, affecting the outside world in order to make it resemble the speculation of a machine.

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At the heart of the history of the computer there has always been the dream that one day it would be able to mathematically simulate the physical world well enough to generate graphics which to our eyes would be indistinguishable from the real world.

As technological capabilities have been edging towards this absolute realism, there are visual artists working at the fringe of what is currently possible, creating short films for lively community on social media platforms, often accompanied by tutorials on how the simulations were achieved.

While these works originate from a place in between the conventional artistic and academic worlds and could be regarded as mere technical demos they often have a unique aesthetic – a sublime that emerges from the hyper-accurate rendering of scenes that are in fact surreal and dreamlike.

After developing an interest in this community while working with computer simulation and modelling in their own respective artistic practices, Andreas N. Fischer, Sascha Pohflepp and Chris Woebken conceived the exhibition presented here. The five selected artists were provided with video footage taken at Building 15 which constituted the basis of the elaborate simulations they each have created.

Island Physics is therefore an exploration of the aesthetics of computer simulation as well as a survey of a community. Most of all, it is the attempt to turn a former living room into a testing-ground for alternate realities and impossible happenings.


Kai Kostack:

https://www.youtube.com/user/KaiKostack

Mohamad (Moby Motion) Zeina:

https://www.youtube.com/user/moby1toby

Andreas Nicholas (ANF6000) Fischer:

http://anf.nu

Gottfried (BlenderDiplom) Hofmann:

https://www.youtube.com/user/BlenderDiplom

Tayfun (blazraidr) Ozdemir:

https://www.youtube.com/user/blazraidr

 

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PLEASE NOTE: WORKSHOP HAS BEEN POSTPONED TO 3/28!

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In reaction to the opaque systems revealed to be at play online, artists, engineers and designers have been progressively exploring new ways to hand control back to web users. With this need for independence growing out of initiatives such as the Self-hosted and Internet-independent movements, Superglue provides users with the option for creating and hosting your own website from home. 

Superglue is an easy, entry-level visual web authoring tool which operates on an inexpensive personal server, enabling you to host your own content and skip the Cloud.

This hands-on workshop presents an opportunity for you to try out this exciting new platform and learn the process of converting an off-the-shelf device into a fully functional, personal web-server.

ABOUT THE PROJECT
Over the last 18 months a team of artists, engineers, programmers, designers and researchers have been building Superglue.  It saw a test launch in October 2014, and is now ready for public trials.  With user experience in mind, the Superglue visual web authoring tool comes as a handy, easy-to-use, browser add-on, which enables you to create websites directly in the browser window. To host your website at home, Superglue operates on a personal server - a modified device which you plug into the wall, instantly creating your very own web server.

Superglue is developed by Danja Vasiliev, Joscha Jaeger and Michael Zeder in collaboration with Teresa Dillon, VERBALVISUAL and zerbamine.

REQUIREMENTS
No specialist technical or web development knowledge is necessary.

Please bring
- laptop
- your own server
We recommend these two inexpensive models.  Please let us know if this is not possible (email erica@eyebeam.org); a few pre-configured servers will be available for participants to test during the workshop.

ABOUT THE INSTRUCTOR
Danja Vasiliev
is a Critical Engineer born in Saint-Petersburg, currently living and working in Berlin.  He studies Systems and Networks through anti-disciplinary experimentation with hardware, firmware and software. Using computational platforms he engages in examination and exploitation of System and Network paradigms in both the physical and digital realms. Based on these findings, Vasiliev creates and exhibits works of Critical Engineering.  Since 1999 Vasiliev has been involved in computer-technology events, media-art exhibitions and seminars around the world. He has received a number of awards and mentions at Ars Electronica, Japan Media Art Festival, and Transmediale, among others.  In October 2011, together with his colleagues Julian Oliver and Gordan Savičić, Vasiliev coauthored The Critical Engineering Manifesto.

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Eyebeam is pleased to announce that resident Joanne McNeil and collaborator Dan Phiffer are winners of the Digital Media and Learning Competition’s Trust Challenge. The Trust Challenge seeks solutions to issues of trust, privacy, and safety in connected learning today. McNeil and Phiffer’s proposal “OurNet: Building Trusted Network Infrastructures for Youth” was chosen from a competitive pool of contestants.

OurNet: Building Trusted Network Infrastructures for Youth” is a series of workshops for students teaching them how to build a simplified social network that would be unique to their classroom and also a private internal network without using an internet service provider (ISP). This project will empower students with a basic understanding of the key components of network infrastructure, while at the same time enabling them to develop their own private networks.

Documentation for this proposal was based on existing projects: Phiffer's "Occupy.here" and Paul Ford's "Tilde Club". 

 

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Edged Into a Void: Sensoria is inspired by the seminal text Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl in which Harriet Jacobs, writing pseudonymously as Linda Brent, describes living in her grandmother’s garret before escaping to New York. For seven years Jacobs hid in the negative space of a pent roof to escape her slaver. She designated the nine feet long, seven feet wide and three feet high empty architectural site a place to transition into freedom. The garret was small and admitted very little light impacting Jacobs’ physiological state. This sculpture is a spatial inference represented by three objects. It is a set of geometric shapes tracing, deconstructing, and inverting what we know of the garret. 

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Exertions is a series of written choreographies that, when performed and documented, extend the terrain of late nineteenth century movement studies into more ambiguous, strenuous, emotional, and contemporary ground.